Faith Daily | 28 April 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p 505
whose Son Jesus Christ is the resurrection and the life
of all who put their trust in him:
raise us, we pray, from the death of sin
to the life of righteousness;
that we may ever seek the things which are above,
where he reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
GOSPEL for the Day: John 3: 31-36
31The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is of the earth belongs to the earth and speaks about earthly things. The one who comes from heaven is above all. 32He testifies to what he has seen and heard, yet no one accepts his testimony. 33Whoever has accepted his testimony has certified this, that God is true. 34He whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure. 35The Father loves the Son and has placed all things in his hands. 36Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever disobeys the Son will not see life, but must endure God’s wrath.
I find it very moving to consider John, one of the disciples, brother of James, now the author of this Gospel. He is an old man in Ephesus, ‘speaking to camera’ as it were, writing, or dictating his account of Jesus the Messiah, the one he knew well then. Now, he knows Jesus more fully as the heavenly man, ‘the one sent by God, speaking the words of God.’ John looks back on the resurrection and the time of Jesus being taken up into heaven and sees him as ‘heavenborn’, incomparably above ‘earthborn’ messengers. The Book of the Revelation seems to have been written later. John has had a long life and has seen much trouble, but is now caught up in the mystery and wonder of what he has seen.
What speaks to me is the way ‘the father loves the Son extravagantly. He turns everything over to him so that he could give it away – a lavish distribution of gifts… so that we might have life, complete and forever’ ™. The chain of distribution is from the Father to the Son to the Spirit and down to us.
The gifts of this Spirit overflow, washing over us as we believe, changing our lives. Our bodies may at times trudge along but our spirits do not need to do that.
Where would we be without the Sunshine of the Spirit? John reminds us we would be in darkness. Through the goodness of God we are transformed, in our earthiness we are opened up to life. The promise of Jesus is that we are not condemned to death but we are welcomed to a more glorious life beyond this life.
FINAL PRAYER M. Leunig, 2004
God help us
To rise up from our struggle.
Like a tree rises up from the soil.
Our roots reaching down to our trouble,
Our rich, dark dirt of existence.
Finding nourishment deeply
And holding us firmly.
Growing upwards and into the sun.